Meridian - Head Tennis coach Simon Bardel has stepped down after two seasons at the helm.
During those two years, Simon led the men's team to an 11-8 record and the ladies to a 10-8 record and a berth in the 2019 NJCAA National Tournament.
Simon said, "The decision to leave was not an easy one to make. My wife has family in Texas who she wanted to be closer to, so we decided that we would move back to Texas so that she could be closer to them." Bardel added, "My experience working at MCC was good. The team and players have been great. It was a great experience getting to work with the athletes and push them to do and be better."
A native of Beulah Victoria, Australia, Bardell came to MCC as a student-athlete after being recruited by former head coach Wanda McPhail in the fall of 2010.
As an Eagle, Bardell netted many accomplishments. He was 29-13 in doubles and 28-11 in singles at the No. 1 and No. 2 positions.
As a sophomore at MCC, Bardell received the Arthur Ashe Award, which recognized outstanding individuals at the regional and national levels.
After leaving MCC, he continued his education and tennis at the University of West Alabama, earning a bachelor's degree in physical education.
Bardell didn't remain away from alma mater for long. He volunteered to work with the Eagles assisting McPhail in February 2017 became an assistant coach, learning from his former coach how to instill in the student-athletes the values of a good work ethic, conditioning, and academics.
Athletic Director Sander Atkinson said, "Simon did an outstanding job during his time as our tennis coach. I truly appreciate his dedication to the program and student-athletes. He will be missed, but we wish he and Katy well in their future endeavors."